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Amputee Dayton Webber, 11, excels at wrestling -- and a whole lot more

Dayton Webber, 11, had his limbs amputated when he was 11 months old. He's now a known presence on the area's youth wrestling circuit.

Mac, 9, maneuvered himself onto Dayton's back, pressing until Dayton's face nearly touched the mat. Dayton rose and flipped his opponent to the mat. After three one-minute periods, the whistle blew again. Mac won on points, 4 to 1.

Mac offered his hand for the postmatch handshake. Dayton reached out and touched it with his padded stump.

Mac's mother, Geanie Scott, said it was hard to watch the match because she wanted to root for both boys. "We all have challenges, but he has more," Scott said.

Good luck convincing Dayton of that.

'He's just a boy'

Dayton not only skateboards but also does tricks -- the equivalent of handstands on his arm stumps. He races go-karts, with the help of Velcro-outfitted gloves that help him control the steering wheel with the insides of his biceps. He plays video games, such as "Madden NFL 10," balancing the controls on his lap and pecking at the buttons.

He ice-skates. "We just stick his legs in the skates and tie them real tight," said his mother, Natalie Webber, 37.

Dayton is also the family's most skilled user of chopsticks, she said.

His parents said they never pushed him to play or compete, nor did they discourage his athletic aspirations. (Dayton, though, contends that he had to nag his parents to let him play football.)

"He's just a boy," Natalie said. "In our family, that's what kids do. All the members of our family are athletically oriented. Anything a kid would want to do, he does."

When he was 8 and 9, Dayton played on a youth football team, which had an "A" squad for the better players and a "B" team. Dayton played for the "A" team. He has prosthetic legs, but he eschewed them on the gridiron. On his stumps, he played on the defensive line, usually lining up in a four-point stance, sometimes standing upright like a linebacker.

Before long, his teammates and coaches were calling Dayton "the Vacuum" because he was so good at recovering fumbles -- at least four in one game.

"He has a nose for the football you wouldn't believe," said Rich Brenner, one of Dayton's football coaches.


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